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Ind. GOP leader sanctions Senator amid intraparty fight over gay marriage ban

Friday, February 21, 2014

INDIANAPOLIS — The top Republicans in the Indiana Senate removed a conservative senator from a leadership position this week in the wake of an intraparty fight over amending the state’s constitution to ban gay marriage.

David Long

Senate President David Long

Senate President Pro Tem David Long and other members of his leadership team told Sen. Mike Delph of Carmel on Thursday that he would lose his ranking within the Republican caucus, his press secretary and his literal seat among other Republicans in the Senate chamber — Delph will now sit among the Senate’s Democrats.

The sanctions came just a few days after Delph called a Statehouse news conference where he accused Long, of Fort Wayne, and others of purposely delaying a public vote on the gay marriage ban. Supporters of the proposed ban, including Delph, suffered a surprising defeat at the Statehouse when the measure was altered by House lawmakers to remove a ban on civil unions, effectively delaying a final decision on the issue at least two years.

Just minutes before the Senate decided against restoring the ban and sending the issue to the ballot this November, Delph tweeted that the issue was dead for the session. Long spokeswoman Lindsay Jancek said the punishment was not based on Delph’s criticism of Long, but instead because he tweeted about internal caucus proceedings. She declined further comment.

Delph declined comment Friday and said he would talk more about the issue next week.

One of the few lawmakers to comment openly about Delph’s sanctions Friday was House Minority Leader Scott Pelath, D-Michigan City, who was one of Delph’s fraternity brothers when they attended Indiana University in the early ’90s.

“He is a good person, and if you needed help cleaning out your garage he’d come over and he’d help you,” Pelath said. “But Mike understands that words have consequences and when you’re really being what you believe is courageous, that means you have to accept the consequences of that courage.”

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10 more reader comments:

  1. Fuck this frog!

    Posted on Saturday, February 22, 2014 at 12:04am
  2. others a fleeing the GOP anyways.

    Posted on Saturday, February 22, 2014 at 12:04am
  3. Get rid of him!

    Posted on Saturday, February 22, 2014 at 12:05am
  4. Get rid of all the old, wrinkled, closed-minded, bigoted, judgmental, ignorant, bible-thumping, genetic cul-de-sacs known as Republicans.

    Posted on Saturday, February 22, 2014 at 12:20am
  5. The GOP is going extinct

    Posted on Saturday, February 22, 2014 at 12:31am
  6. What courage is he talking about?

    Posted on Saturday, February 22, 2014 at 12:46am
  7. Yes fire all the bigots >:D

    Posted on Saturday, February 22, 2014 at 12:58am
  8. This is how petty, small-minded, and mean-spirited the Republicans have become in this state. If only the conservatives here could realize how they waste our money and get little done that will have a POSITIVE impact on our state. Pitiful.

    Posted on Saturday, February 22, 2014 at 1:40am
  9. The GOP, in the name of their god, are destroying their party from the inside out…gotta love it.

    Posted on Saturday, February 22, 2014 at 2:30am
  10. I am so fucking sick of people saying that these bigots are “good people”…FUCK THAT…They are douche bags…Enjoy your new seat fuck stick

    Posted on Saturday, February 22, 2014 at 3:09am